Testing Argus Surveillance VMS

Author: Benros Emata, Published on Jul 12, 2010

In this test, we examine Argus Surveillance's VMS, an offering that provides licensing for unlimited numbers of cameras and servers for less than $1000 and for 16 cameras at less than $200. Can a price so low be for real? What tradeoffs and issues will you face?

This test was conducted on a Windows 7, 64 bit machine, integrating a range of cameras including the Axis Q1755, D-Link DCS-920 TRENDnet TV-IP110. 

While some of the provided functionalities were impressive and similar to much more expensive solutions, a complete lack of support raised concerns over how dependable and for how long could one depend on this system for their surveillance. This may be attractive for someone really looking to save up-front but could result in expensive problems or issues down the line.

Compare to our test results for Blue Iris, another inexpensive offering in our series that is only $50 per server license.

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Technical *******:  Technical support appears to be non-existent. We received no reply to our numerous requests for technical support via their website over a span of a month. No phone number is provided on Argus's website.

Face *********:  We were able to capture faces but the subject needed to be in a very narrow field of view (less than 5 feet wide) and the lighting needed to be even. At slight angles (tilting one's head away from the camera) or with modest shadows, face catpure was infrequent. No supporting documentation was provided for face detection. It is possible that some setting(s) exist to improve this but with the limitations noted, this was the best results we could achive.

Setup:  Generally setup is simple and straightforward; however, the fragmented interface can cause some confusion. For example, numerous menus and sub-menus must be accessed to completely configure a camera for recording (event monitoring, frame rate, schedules, etc.). Potential for error during setup is increased because related configurations are not grouped together within a single page or 'workspace'.

Live ********** / **************:  Live monitoring is easy even for non-technical users. Primary camera controls and thumbnails representing cameras feeds are displayed on-screen. Untrained users can select controls or select thumbnails to view or control video.

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Live ********** & **************

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